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Annual Retention Fee

The Annual Retention Fee (ARF) is the fee all registered dentists and dental care professionals must pay each year to remain on the dentists register or dental care professionals register.

If you have not yet registered, you will pay a pro rata fee

When do I pay the ARF?

The deadline for all dental care professionals to pay is 31 July each year, while the deadline for all dentists to pay is 31 December each year. You will receive a letter ahead of the deadline with information about how you can make the payment.

How can I pay?

You can pay your ARF by:

If you have a direct debit set up to pay your ARF we will claim the fee as one sum from your bank account.

Please remember to let us know immediately by contacting us here or in writing if you change any of your bank details for your direct debit. If you forget to do this, we may not be able to claim your ARF by direct debit. This could put your registration at risk and result in you being removed from the register for non payment and not being able to practise in the UK.

How much is the ARF?

The fee for dentists is £680 and must be paid by 31 December.

Dentists

  

ARF period

Amount

Due date

1 Jan 2020 - 31 Dec 2020

£680

31 Dec 2019

The fee for maintaining entry on our specialist lists is £72 per specialty and must be paid by 31 December.

Specialists (per speciality)

  

ARF period

Amount

Due date

1 Jan 2020 - 31 Dec 2020

£72

31 Dec 2019

The fee for dental care professionals is £114 and must be paid by 31 July.

Dental care professionals

  

ARF period

Amount

Due date

1 Aug 2020 - 31 Jul 2021

£114

31 July 2020

When will I receive my annual practising certificate?

We will send you your annual practising certificate to your registered address. If you have not received your certificate six weeks after your payment has been processed then please call 020 7167 6000 or contact us here. You can also download your certificate by logging on to your eGDC account.

 

No, we are unfortunately unable to issue any refunds once the payment deadline has passed, or a proportion of it, if you choose to remove your name from the register part way through the year.
The GDC automated payment telephone line is no longer available to registrants during the Annual Renewal periods. ​
 
When it is time to pay your ARF you will be able to make payment by credit or debit card online via your eGDC account. If you do not have an eGDC account, you will need to set one up. Please note, we do not accept American Express or Diners Club International.​
 
Alternatively, you can pay by cheque made payable to 'General Dental Council'.  Please ensure that you write your name and registration number on the back of the cheque. Post the cheque to the below address:
 
Renewal Team
General Dental Council 
1 Colmore Square, Birmingham, B4 6AJ 
A freepost envelope will be included with your Annual Renewal notice for you to send it to us. Please do not write on the freepost envelope, this may mean we do not receive your renewal.​
We have worked hard to improve the renewal process and hope that you will find it efficient and error free. However, should you have a complaint or comment we would like to hear from you, as it will allow us to improve the renewal process further.

​Every team member has a responsibility to the patient who is being treated. For example a dental technician produces appliances which can directly affect the well-being of that patient – even if they never meet face-to-face. They also have responsibilities to other dental team members to ensure patients interests are put first.
​The ARF is £680 for dentists and £114 for dental care professionals.
You will not receive your annual practising certificate if you haven’t declared your indemnity. Even if you have paid your ARF, you must also state you have indemnity in place, or will have when you begin practising.
All registrants are required to have the appropriate indemnity insurance in order to practise in the UK. Registrants renewing their registration through the Annual Renewal process will have to confirm that they have indemnity cover in place, or will have when they start to practise. If you fail to do so, you will not be able to renew your registration.
 
The Annual Retention Fee for Dental Care Professionals must be paid on or before 31 July each year, and on or before 31 December for dentists.
 
Each year we will notify registrants in writing before their Annual Renewal is due. To fully complete your Annual Renewal you need to pay your ARF and declare your indemnity. 
When it is time to pay your ARF you will be able to make payment using one of the following methods:
 
Online
You can make payment by credit or debit card online via your eGDC account. If you do not have an eGDC account, you will need to set one up. Please note, we do not accept American Express or Diners Club International.​
 
By Post

Cheques should be made payable to 'General Dental Council' and posted to the below address:

Renewal Team
General Dental Council
1 Colmore Square
Birmingham
B6 6AJ

Please ensure that you write your name and registration number on the back of the cheque. A freepost envelope will be included with your Annual Renewal notice for you to send it to us. Please do not write on the freepost envelope, this may mean we do not receive your renewal.

​We regret that we cannot accept payment by BACs.
​If you would like to set up a direct debit to pay your ARF, please go to your eGDC account
 
Dentists
We will send registrants information on their 2020 Annual Renewal in November 2019​. You have until midnight on 31 October 2019 to set up a new direct debit for the 2020 Annual Renewal. All payments for the 2020 Annual Renewal must be received on or before 31 December 2019 to ensure renewal of your entry on the register.
 
If you wish to cancel your direct debit you have until midnight 27 November 2019. After this time the only way to cancel your direct debit is directly with your bank, however there is no guarantee this will be processed in time and payment may still be taken.
 
Dental Care Professionals
You must set up the direct debit by noon on 31 May 2019 in order to pay your next ARF this way. We will send your 2019-2020 Annual Renewal notice in June 2019. If you miss the 31 May 2019 deadline you can still set up a direct debit to pay the 2020-2021 ARF, but you will need to make alternative arrangements for the 2019-2020 fee. All payments for the 2019-2020 ARF must be received by 31 July 2019 to ensure renewal of your entry on the register.
 
Please remember
Once you have set up a direct debit, you still need to login and make your indemnity declaration when the Annual Renewal period starts. You cannot complete your Annual Renewal if you do not pay your fee and make your indemnity declaration by 31 July for dental professionals or 31 December for dentists. You must complete both parts to complete your renewal. 
​Dentists

We seek to take the direct debit approximately four weeks before the 31 December deadline as this allows registrants whose direct debits fail the opportunity to pay by an alternative means. You will be notified of the exact date at least ten working days before we claim the direct debit. However, we will claim the direct debit on/around the 3 December 2019.

In some cases it can also take up to two weeks for banks to inform us that a direct debit has failed. If a direct debit fails we then need to write to those registrants and advise them that they still need to make a payment. If your direct debit claim is unsuccessful we will contact you to remind you that you must pay the ARF in full by 31 December 2019 if you wish to renew your entry on the register from 1 January 2020.

Dental Care Professionals

We will claim the direct debit on/around the 2 July 2019 i.e. approximately four weeks before the payment deadline of 31 July 2019. You will be notified of the exact date at least ten working days before we claim the direct debit. 

Please note that you must set up the direct debit by midday on 31 May 2019 in order to pay your next ARF this way. Please check your Annual Renewal notice which we will send to you in June 2019. If you miss this deadline you can still set up a direct debit to pay the 2020-2021 ARF but you will need to make alternative arrangements for the 2019-2020 fee.
If you have not received your Annual Renewal notice at least four weeks before the annual retention fee is due please call us on 020 7167 6000. The helpline is open between 8am and 6pm Monday to Friday during the ARF collection period.
 
The fee for Dental Care Professionals must be paid on or before 31 July each year, and on or before 31 December for Dentists. If you have not received your notice you can pay via debit or credit card via your eGDC account.
If you have changed your registered address and you have not notified us you may not receive your Annual Renewal notice. Please check your details on the online register or on the ‘Contact Details’ page of your eGDC account.
​It is not possible to pay your ARF in instalments. We have looked at this on several occasions. We believe it would only be fair to introduce instalments if all registrants were able to pay this way. So far we have not found a solution to allow us to do this in a cost efficient way.
 
There are a number of issues related to offering payments by instalments which could ultimately end up increasing the financial burden on registrants, including:
  • We cannot offer this to all registrants without changing the law (specifically the Dentists Act) through a section 60 order which would take time and money. 
  • A new GDC-run payment system would need to be designed, developed and tested in order to make sure it worked properly. Our research shows this would be a lengthy and costly process. It is likely extra GDC staff would then be needed to maintain and update the information on it.
  • The external firms we could employ to collect payments in instalments are generally unwilling to collect amounts under £400 (e.g. the DCP fee) due to the amount of work involved for the return they would receive, so making such an operation commercially unviable.
There are also additional costs linked to the number of mailings we would have to send, for example, we would have to send reminder letters every time instalment payments fail to go through properly.
​No, the fee is not a membership fee; it confirms your registration for the full period it relates to. It is payable by all dental professionals who are on our registers on the renewal date in order to maintain their registration with the GDC. We are unfortunately not able to adjust the fee according to registrants’ employment circumstances.
​​No. As a registrant there is no reduction if you work part-time or take a period of leave from the profession for any reason.
​As a registrant there is no reduction if you take a period of leave from the profession for any reason. This is because the current legislation states that the fee is for making the entry of your name on the register, rather than for the fact of being registered. This is why it is not apportioned nor is any part of the fee refunded if a person comes off the Register during the year. Similarly fees on renewal are not treated on a pro rata basis and unfortunately there is no provision in the existing legislation for the refund or reduction of fees in these circumstances.
​We send all Annual Renewal related postal correspondence, including the notice and the annual practising certificate to your registered address. Therefore please ensure that your registered details are up to date by checking the GDC’s on-line registers.
 
You can update your details using your eGDC account
The GDC will email you a confirmation once you have completed both parts of your Annual Renewal.
 
If you require a postal receipt then please contact us
​It is your responsibility to pay your fee on time. If you miss the payment deadline your name may be removed from the register. If you are not registered you will not be able to practise in the UK. A list of those people who have been removed from the register for non-payment will be circulated to the NHS, health boards and clinical commissioning groups to enable them to keep their records up to date.
 

If you are removed from the register and wish to resume practise in the UK, you must first restore your name to the register

Please be aware that it is illegal for an unregistered dentist or dental care professional to practise dentistry in the UK. You must therefore not practise until your name has been restored to the register.

You have a choice about how and when your name is removed:
 
  • During the Annual Renewal period you can remove your name by logging into your eGDC account where you will have the option of selecting 'Do not Renew' under the 'Manage Payments' section. We will record the reason for removal as 'Voluntary removal'.  We will then write to you to confirm that you are no longer registered or:
  • You can choose not to pay your fee at the end of the Annual Renewal year and we will remove your name, recording the reason for removal as 'Non-payment'.
  • During the rest of the year you can contact the registration operations team by email and we will send you the appropriate paperwork.
If you do not intend to retire completely then please remember that:
  • Once you are removed from the register your name will be circulated to the NHS, health boards and indemnity providers throughout the UK;
If you wish to resume practice in the UK, you must first apply to restore your name to the register

Yes, to fully complete your Annual Renewal you must pay your ARF and declare your Indemnity.